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Vermont - Ten Random (Tbilissi Recordings)

Despite band members being (dis)located in different countries, Vermont have created a cohesive collection of oddball pop songs full of poisoned gingerbread and tuneful bickering that’s worth glueing into yer stereo for the entire autumn at least. ‘Ten Random’ feels like sitting in a pool of glorious afternoon sunlight, but letting things get under your skin. Beneath the exuberant, tricksy pop, there’s a wistfulness that tugs at you through the tracks. Crafted with a kind of lulling sing-song simplicity, tunes have been tickled into existence and then left naked on the rug whilst lolloping keyboards, ticking, scrabbling guitars and curious squeaky noises gather round to ooh and ahh.

‘Heavy 1’ starts things of with a joyous kicking. Squidgy keyboards and Sabine’s eyes-to-the-ceiling-vocals make this perfect for all the indie girls (and boys) to stand clasping their handbags, swaying feyly whilst secretly wanting to bounce off the walls. More cute Sabineness (‘Whenever I pretend to leave / You put a record on to calm the silence down’) on live fave ‘Motor Car (da da da)’. With its dippy playschool keyboards, it’s the sound of clockwork mice running riot. Other tracks employ the Vermont technique that made me fall for them in the first place - Sabine and Colin’s voices in tandem. She spirals whilst he is the gravitational pull rambling underneath (‘Listen To Me’) or gulpingly leapfrogging over (‘Our Show, Our Fight…’).

‘Listen To Me’ builds blocks of pulsating sound which, instead of juddering into an extended drone mantra, soon come to a dead end, and it’s enough, just right. Chiming guitars and franticly plinking piano tumble together accompanying domestic disharmony duet ‘Yeah, and…’ ‘So you’re right this time/ Don’t keep on at me/ So you’re right this time / Go and make my tea.’ The marvellously titled ‘In*rtia’ sparkles, gently twisting it’s way up your spine with sherbety guitars which gradually go all blearily epic. There’s a great bit where one squeals just before they kick in.

‘Animals That Eat Out Of Pots’ is a heartbursting pop song to round things off (unless you count the spooky piano ‘secret track’). It soars gleefully around the room, bashing against the windows until you have to go back to the beginning and play all the tracks again. Vermont should be cherished alongside Fonda 500 as a perfect, skew-whiff band swerving along a loopy pop path that they can call their very own.

RRRG: Delightful chaotic flake

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